Is It Better to Sell Your Own Home or Hire an Agent?

Should you list your home as For Sale By Owner? I would actually recommend working with a real estate agent, and there are a few reasons why.

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A lot of people have been asking if they should sell with an agent or go the For Sale By Owner route. The value of a real estate agent is not to be understated.

As a seller, it’s important to understand that there are four different types of buyers: serious and in a hurry, serious and not in a hurry, looky-loos, and investors.

Buyers who are serious and in a hurry may be under contract to sell their current home, which only gives them a certain number of days to purchase another. Serious buyers who are in a hurry may also be from out of state and only have a few days to look at homes. Either way, they are qualified and ready to make a purchase right away.

Buyers who are serious but not in a hurry may be living in their parents’ house or don’t want to sell their current home before they purchase their next one. They do want to make a purchase, but they have a bit more time to shop around than other buyers.

Looky-loos just like to go out and look at real estate for fun. They are not qualified to buy and they have no intention of buying.

Investors want to get everything for 10 cents on the dollar.

Serious buyers are going to go out with a Realtor to look for a home. Buyers that are in a hurry are prepared to pay retail price. Looky-loos are just time wasters and don’t work with an agent. Investors do work with real estate agents, but again, they are just looking for a deal.

If you decide to sell your home as a FSBO property, then investors will be the ones calling you non-stop. They are looking for a deal. Since they see that you are not represented by a real estate agent, they think that you may not know how to price the property or how to be a strong negotiator. They see that you want a deal as well, and think that increases their chances of getting a good deal themselves.

If you list on your own, investors will be calling you and trying to get a deal.

If you want to sell your home to a serious buyer at the retail price, then you should list with a real estate agent. Agents are showing homes all day every day. As a FSBO seller, you will miss a lot of the market. You may have your home listed for sale online, but you may not be on the multiple listing service.

From 2001 to 2012, 12 to 14% of all home sales were FSBO properties. In the past three years, that number has dropped to 8%.

That may seem counterintuitive. Thanks to the Internet, selling your own home should be easier. Right?

Unfortunately, that’s not the case. When buyers had to drive around to shop for homes, FSBO sellers were able to compete. Buyers don’t do that anymore; they start their home search online. FSBO sellers cannot keep up with all of the online marketing strategies that a professional real estate agent uses.

Ultimately, if you plan on selling your home, it just makes sense to hire an expert real estate agent. You will get the highest price in the time frame that you want with the least amount of hassle. In the end, you will actually save money by hiring a real estate agent to act as your expert negotiator. It really is a no-brainer.

If you have any other questions about real estate or are interested in selling your home, just give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!